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Are You Leaving Money On The Table With Your Upsells?

Oct 15, 2007
You might be surprised to learn the results of a recent split test I designed to analyze a client's upsell capabilities. I know I myself was extremely surprised!

I have always advised my clients on the importance of upselling, and, as a marketing student, I was indoctrinated with the common practice of gradually working new customers up the price ladder. Obviously then, it would be a normal procedure that the price of upsells be only slightly higher than the original item being purchased.

So, when I originally designed my client's upsell page, we offered the "next best" item, based on price. The page performed OK, and results were the run-of-the-mill, industry standard.

But, after discussing a few ideas to increase this client's revenues, I decided to try a little experiment. I ran an A/B/C split test on the upsell page, using the original page as my control, Page A. The design for Page B included a vertical list of several items offered as an upsell: the item on the original Page A, three additional, higher priced items, and, at the bottom of the list was a one-time-offer Bonanza Box of all four items offered at a discount. Page C included the exact items listed on Page B, except this time the list was reversed, so the Bonanza Box appeared at the top of the list.

I will admit, at first I was a bit nervous. I thought we might insult his customers who randomly landed on one of our new pages. Or perhaps we would turn them off by appearing too pushy, too salesy. But, I was amazed to discover that Page C, which offered the highest priced item at the top of the page, actually increased revenue by over 29%.

There is a lesson to be learned here: don't be afraid to offer a bundle or a premium product as your upsell. There's an excellent chance that you will increase your revenues! But, of course, be sure you test, test and test some more to guarantee the best results from your target market.

Time to implement: Anytime you split test entire pages, you should expect quite a project. First, you must design the concept, then create the separate pages, add product options to your shopping cart, upload everything into your testing software - you're looking at a full day's work to get everything perfect. But, for a 29% increase in revenue, I'll bet it's worth it.
About the Author
Karen Scharf helps entrepreneurs and small business owners attract and retain more clients. Karen offers several coaching programs and a Marketing Makeover to turn your current, ineffective advertising into a new and improved system. She also accepts full service marketing assignments. Check out her FREE reports at http://www.ModernImage.com.
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